Neil Van Dine, a member of the E-Club of WASH in District 9980 (New Zealand), spent 15 years on projects to bring wells and hand pumps to communities in Haiti, struggling to keep them operational. In 2004, he commissioned a survey that revealed half of the wells weren’t functioning. Previous efforts to provide maintenance weren’t holding up. So Van Dine and his team reassessed and came up with a new plan: His Rotary club trained the community to develop a business plan that involved the whole community. The plan involves collecting a small amount of money from each household that is earmarked toward maintenance and repairs of the wells. Now, 90 percent of the wells they have built are operational.
While today is World Water Day, Rotarians will continue solving problems around the world with their expertise. Learn more about Rotary International’s initiative to provide clean water and how Rotarians like Van Dine are mobilizing resources around water, sanitation, and hygiene.
Michiko Mitarai shows Kenyan villagers a Japanese method for drawing water from a well.
By Michiko Mitarai, Rotary Club of Tokyo Hiroo
Rotary has changed my life in many ways. Through Rotary, I have discovered the world is a bigger place and I have been able to visit parts of it that I would never have been able to if I hadn’t joined.
As a member of the Rotary club of Tokyo Hiroo, I traveled to rural communities in Kenya with members of four different Rotary clubs. We visited 14 wells that our club supported. In Funyula, near the border of Uganda, we even stayed at the house of a member of the Rotary Club of Nairobi East, who was once a member of our club while he served as the Kenyan Ambassador to Japan. Continue reading
On Earth Day, billions of people worldwide take action to protect our planet by holding demonstrations, cleaning up their communities, planting trees, contacting elected officials, or otherwise showing their support for renewable energy and conservation. Follow the links below to learn how Rotary clubs are committed to the environment, particularly through managing our vital resources and providing clean water. Continue reading